Shepton Mallet prison closure marked with special service


A service is taking place later to mark the closure of the UK's oldest working prison. The prison in Shepton Mallet was one of seven closures announced in January by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). The MoJ said it wants to drive down the cost of running "old and uneconomic" prisons and expects to save £63m per year. Former staff will join the Bishop of Bath and Wells, the Rt Rev Peter Price, and a military band at the service. Churches in Shepton Mallet will toll bells at noon - the expected time the staff will leave the prison for the final time. There has been a prison on the site, sometimes known as HMP Cornhill, since 1610.